There's much talk about early bird political action committees who are already fundraising for a potential Hillary Clinton campaign for president. Such news takes a back seat to a close head count on Capitol Hill revealing how many Democratic lawmakers have stepped forward to endorse Mrs. Clinton, though she has yet to declare her intentions.
The Water Cooler is written by Washington Times staffers.
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With much fanfare last summer, the American Medical Association declared that obesity was a disease, and should be treated as such. Psychologists are not so sure, however. A study released Tuesday, in fact, says that labeling obesity as a disease may undermine healthy behaviors.
It's a tough audience. The annual primetime State of the Union address is not exactly galvanizing the viewing public. Just 28 percent say they definitely plan to watch President Obama's address on Tuesday evening, according to a new Harris poll. What to do? Serious-minded strategies at the White House appear to be giving way to entertainment.
It is is political theater at its most frantic: the State of the Union address - SOTU in popular parlance - may now stand for "so too" much. The annual rite is amplified by shrill news coverage and endlessly endlessly punctuated by partisan applause, planned distractions, mystifying protocols and annoying insider behaviors.
So do you say a little prayer during a pivotal play or wear your lucky socks during a big game? You are not alone.
Even a billionaire ex-mayor of major city must do something to keep busy when the bustle is over - teach, speak, create a new foundation, take a long vacation. That's not what former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has in mind, however.
Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's personal statements on new surveillance guidelines
"As intelligence professionals, we have historically preferred to avoid the spotlight, but we know that for the foreseeable future, the public will remain focused on what we do and how we do it. To build on and maintain the trust of the American people and our international partners, we must embrace the President's call for transparency."
"Today, America embraces people of all faiths and of no faith. We are Christians and Jews, Muslims and Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs, atheists and agnostics. Our religious diversity enriches our cultural fabric and reminds us that what binds us as one is not the tenets of our faiths, the colors of our skin, or the origins of our names."
RINO: It is a popular acronym among conservatives who ponder political intricacies. "Republican in name only" designates elected officials whose liberal leanings outshine their conservative values. Yet RINO has now become a rallying cry for Republican Party unity - at least according to former presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee, who wants his fellow Republicans to stop using the term.
Rush bests Hillary? Talk show host more admired than former senator and Secretary of State? In yet another telling cultural moment, a new survey from the Times of London and YouGov asked respondents in a dozen nations who they "most admired" in the world. The question was open-ended rather than multiple choice, incidentally.
Potential political woes are multiplying in the hallowed halls of the U.S. Capitol: The Tea Party Leadership Fund PAC has declared House Speaker John Boehner an enemy of conservatives.
Networks offer 44 times more coverage to Christie's traffic woes than to IRS targeting of conservative groups
Yes, there's a media feeding frenzy around New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and so-called "bridge-gate", which may or may not lead to serious political peril for him. The coverage cycle is so swift that some news organizations wonder when the headlines will shift to the predictable "Christie comeback" scenario. But one media analyst finds that while the press is attentive to Christie, it continues to ignore the IRS targeting of conservative groups.
Oh, the curse of those lousy polls: sinking job favorability numbers have become a given during President Obama's second term, both for the White House and Congress. But here comes an interesting phenomenon: voters appear to be warming towards Republicans as the 2014 midterms approach.
This is the era of "red, wild and blue America" says the Sportsman Channel, which will introduce new host Sarah Palin to the Hollywood press on Friday to prove its point.
Now immersed in his fourth visit to North Korea, Dennis Rodman and a cast of former basketball greats will stage an exhibition game before the isolated nation's most elite citizens on Wednesday, all to celebrate the 31st birthday of dictator Kim Jong-un. The world looks on, waiting for spectacle. Or something.